Friday, April 4, 2014

The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Awry

Catching up for time lost...
It was sometime back in January when I first noticed a pain in my leg.  I thought I pulled my hamstring – though I was unsure how it happened.  I wasn’t comfortable, but I muddled through some sewing completing most of what I wanted to accomplish for January.
Then February came along.  And March.  Now it’s April.
After two primary care visits, some unsuccessful traditional physical therapy, an MRI, and a visit to a Spine Center, it was determined that I have a herniated disk in my lumbar back.  Here is my MRI to prove it! 
Sorry for the poor resolution.  The healthy disk are white.  I added a red arrow to designate the herniated disk extrusion.  That “extrusion” is narrowing the passage for my nerves and causing radiating pain from my butt to my ankle.  It was often like having a really bad charley horse that you can shake off.
Sewing was pretty much out of the question during much of this time.  Sitting down is one of my pain triggers, and often I could barely move.  I walked more similarly to an 85 year old woman than a 36 year old.

Now I am going to physical therapy twice a week at the Spine Center and I seem to be on the mend.  I hope to get back to a more regular sewing schedule now that I feel like I can move around.
But the issue is that I had so many plans for things to make in February and March, so I feel like I am so far behind schedule.  Hopefully, I can start getting caught up because while I sat around for 2 months, I came up with a lot more ideas!

Look for at least one new item to be posted this coming weekend!

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Hit and A MIss

To finish my posts about January completed projects, I will include 2 items in today’s post.

First, the HIT!
Late last year, I decided to take my wardrobe options to a new level – I was going to learn to knit.  Okay, so it’s not a huge stretch for me since I already know how to crochet.  I started snooping around Raverly and discovered a set of patterns for beginners from Tin Can Knits.  There are 8 patterns in The Simple Collection and the best part - they are free!   happened to have a skein of 100% wool hanging around, so I started with the first project, the Wheat Scarf, in December.
The other 7 patterns in The Simple Collection include a baby blanket, a hat, a cowl, socks, mitts, a pullover sweater, and a cardigan.  Child through adult sizes are included for all the patterns.  Not only was the pattern great, but the tutorials are also extremely helpful!  There was not a step that was not covered in detail!  And the final result?

It's not perfect, but I really can't complain for being my first knitting project. 

I was so inspired by my first finished knitting project that I have ventured onto bigger and better projects in the world of knitting.  Stay tuned for a another finished project sometime in March!
And now THE MISS!
I saw this wrap dress on BurdaStyle and thought it looks super cute.  It would make a perfect swimsuit coverup!  Bonus #1 - The pattern is free!  OK, so there really isn't a pattern, just instructions telling you cut 2 rectangles and sew them together.  Still, it is FREE!  Bonus #2 - There are several ways to tie the finished fabric into different styles of dresses.  Basically, you could have 3 dresses by just sewing one!

The instructions for inserting the elastic for the neckline were a little confusing.  Here a look at how I pinned the elastic before I sewed it down, then turned it, and sewed it the second time.

  And the result - an utter disappointment.  I am small.  I made the smallest size.  I tied it using the View B Variation.  The fabric is not long enough to tie in the back!  Here are some pictures on my mannequin to give you an idea.
So, I tried View A, Variation 1.  I was still not able to tie it together.  Closer, but no go! 
I was able to make it work with 2 possible dress ideas - See below.  However, the first one has a waterfall of fabric sticking out from the bust - really not attractive.  Lighter fabric could make this better.  For the second dress, I just tied the ends together and put it around the neck.  It looks okay, but it is not what I was going for.


Maybe making a larger size would create the look I am desiring, but it will have to wait. 
Instead you will probably be seeing this fabric again in a different project in the future.  Luckily because you only cut one slit for the neckline, I have plenty to work with. 
Did anyone have success with this pattern?  Anyone else have issues?
Happy Sewing!